Sir Trevor McDonald seeks to show viewers the "reality" and not the "mythology" of the Mob on the program.
Episode One kicks off with John Alite and Michael Franzese, as well as Michael "Mikey Scars" DiLeonardo, who speaks here publicly for the first time since providing his damaging testimony. He lives in constant fear of Mafia reprisal.
|Sir Trevor hosts two-part series on the mob.|
"It was a very proud day in my life," DiLeonardo recalls of the night he was made alongside John Junior Gotti in a ceremony conducted by Salvatore "Sammy the Bull" Gravano standing in for John Gotti.
Sir Trevor starts to speak -- when DiLeonardo abruptly turns his head away from the sidewalk outside the driver's side window and notes that two Luchese crime family members are sitting at a table in front of a restaurant, not far from where the car is stopped at a redlight.
DiLeonardo exited the Witness Protection Program and remains secretive about where he lives, not even revealing his address to the producers of the ITV show. He'd only agree to meet them in a palatial hotel room in Miami.
"You never feel safe, you don't dwell on your past," he notes.
His paramount fear: "Death for myself but also my family."
He says if the mob came for him, they wouldn't care who was in his house or car with him when they kicked the door in and blasted. This is why DiLeonardo claims to only sleep three to four hours a night at most for the past 12 years.
In addition, "my conscientious bothers me," he tells Sir Trevor, noting that he struggles with the "damage I have done." Also "my legacy, what I was born into and gave up..."
DiLeonardo's forebears were among the originators of the Sicilian Cosa Nostra and arrived in America to found the Black Hand organization.
Watching him as he speaks, it seems clear that this former capo truly fears the Mafia; not as some abstract notion nor as a glossy fictional construct. He truly fears dying from bullets blasting into his skull.
This, he notes, is not a question of if, but when.
"I told my wife if I get killed, don't get mad at anybody," he says."She said you're out of it.... I am never out of that life. It's their job to find me and kill me."
"I chose this, I chose the consequences."